The Thompson Brothers have been at it again. They’re passion for whisky is pretty much unmatched and I’d image they’re kept busy enough between their distillery and independent bottlings, but apparently they found some spare time for a new project. The result is the SRV5 Blended Malt. Today we’ll be reviewing Batch 2.
SRV5 stands for Station Road Vat 5 and is the brothers’ blending vat. Or more to the point, a 1200-litre solera vat that they never fully empty, but instead topped up after each batch. They remove no more than two-thirds of the spirit from Vat 5, which amounts to roughly 800 bottles per batch, leaving 450 litres in the vat as a ‘starter’ for the following batch.
As they explain in detail on their website, the Thompson Brothers’ goal with the SRV5 was to create a blended malt that (although consistent) would evolve over time. “We wanted to create a style that we, as whisky geeks, would enjoy. We work with a selection of North Highland, Islay and Speyside Single Malts to create a vatted malt which is bright and fresh and has a great slightly waxy mouthfeel and gentle smokey balance.”
Nose: Just a sliver of peat and soot accompanied by beeswax, and olive brine as well. Also lemon zest, apple skin and petrichor. Finally vanilla pods and a touch of banana custard with a few drops of honey. Taste: The palate really is a continuation of the nose. Subtle smoke, bananas, green apples and a hint of grapefruit. There’s a touch of white pepper, tree sap and some brine too. Finish: Lingering notes of mint, lemon pith and dried grass. Medium in length.
Pretty much spot on, the Thompson Brothers SRV5 Blended Malt delivers on its promise. It combines Speyside, Highland and Islay malts into a whisky that has a distinct traditional Highland feel to it. There's coastal elements, waxiness and a pronounced freshness – all of it for a very affordable price.
I'd imagine this also makes for a great highball, but my sample wasn't large enough for me to find out. Might have to grab a bottle from somewhere.